Project Goal:

CalTrout is leading a team of expert scientists with Sierra Meadows Partnership to develop and implement the first Sierra Meadows Wetland and Riparian Area Monitoring Plan (SM-WRAMP). The SM-WRAMP will provide an authoritative and collaborative approach to monitoring meadow conditions pre- and post-restoration. More importantly, the data collected will be done consistently across the Sierra Nevada, allowing regional comparisons and analyses not currently attainable. WRAMP data will assist land managers to understand current ecological conditions; provide the basis for determining the efficacy of meadow restoration, and improve scientific understanding of cause and effect relationships among key meadow attributes and restoration actions on a regional scale.


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Project Stages

Ongoing

Estimated Completion Date:
Ongoing

Project Funders

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Kern Community Foundation

Fish Affected:

Project Description

CalTrout is leading a team of expert scientists with Sierra Meadows Partnership to develop and implement the first Sierra Meadows Wetland and Riparian Area Monitoring Plan (SM-WRAMP). The SM-WRAMP will provide an authoritative and collaborative approach to monitoring meadow conditions pre- and post-restoration. More importantly, the data collected will be done consistently across the Sierra Nevada, allowing regional comparisons and analyses not currently attainable. WRAMP data will assist land managers to understand current ecological conditions; provide the basis for determining the efficacy of meadow restoration; and improve scientific understanding of cause and effect relationships among key meadow attributes and restoration actions on a regional scale.

Collective research from the Sierra Meadows Partnership, led by CalTrout and funded through CDFW, has discovered that functional meadows switch from net carbon absorbers to carbon emitters when they become degraded and unhealthy (shown left). Because wet meadow plants like sedges and rushes absorb more carbon than sagebrush and other dry meadow vegetation types, they act as carbon sinks. Unfortunately, half of all Sierra Nevada meadows are considered degraded and unhealthy. By considering both climate restoration and source water protection, this research addresses two of the most important threats to California salmonids as stated in the SOS II report.

In summer 2019, CalTrout will begin piloting the Sierra Meadow Wetland and Riparian Area Monitoring Plan (SM-WRAMP) at Horse Meadow in the Sequoia National Forest. The SM-WRAMP provides standardized monitoring protocols that are needed by land managers to determine restoration needs, evaluate restoration efficacy, and inform adaptive management actions. They are also needed to inform hypothesis-driven scientific inquiries and permit comparative studies across multiple scales of time and space. The goal in implementing the SM-WRAMP is to accelerate our understanding of meadow restoration benefits and allow us to better quantify and articulate the ecosystem services provided by healthy meadows to all beneficiaries.

Project Partners:

USGS

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